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The integron content of 52 DT104/U302 phage type strains and 53 non-DT104/U302 strains of Salmonella enterica serotype Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) was studied in PCR experiments using a 5'-CS/3'-CS primer pair (Lévesque et al., 1995). Forty-three out of 44 streptomycin- and/or ampicillin-resistant DT104 and related phage type strains were found to carry a 1 kb and/or 1.2 kb long integron. The other resistance markers did not affect the number and size of integrons; no integron-free multidrug-resistant (MDR) DT104 strains were found. The two large groups of DT104 strains (Felix-Callow's phage types 2 and 2c) proved to be identical in respect of integron patterns (IPs), supporting the views of those authors who consider DT104 a single clone. Strains of human and animal origin did not differ from each other in their IPs. Within the non-DT104 phage types, ampicillin- and/or streptomycin-resistant, integron-free MDR strains were also found. Based on amplicons varying between 290 and 3500 bp an IP system was suggested. The commonest amplicon sizes in non-DT104 strains were 1450 and 2050 bp. The IPs of DT104 strains and of non-DT104 strains containing an integron of 1 and 1.2 kb size were stable. In contrast, the IPs of other non-DT104 strains showed a varying degree of instability. Integron loss was frequently associated with spontaneous plasmid elimination and changes of R-type among the descendants of a given strain.

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An account is given using typing methods and detection of virulence genes of different serotypes of Escherichia coli isolated in Hungary. By hybridization using SLT-I and SLT-II probes and PCR method using stx1-2, eae and ehx primers we could differentiate O157 strains of different serotypes into eight  (stx, eae, ehxA positive; stx, eae positive; stx, ehxA positive; stx positive; eae, ehxA positive; eae positive; ehxA positive; stx, eae, ehxA negative) types. The discriminatory power of phage typing proves to be much higher than that of the plasmid profile. RAPD typing with different primers could confirm or exclude the subtypes identity of the isolated E. coli O157 serotypes. Escherichia coli O157:HNM isolates could be sorted in six different phage types and six different RAPD types with ERIC-1, in five RAPD types with ERIC-2 and in seven types with M13 primers. Escherichia coli O157:H7 showed six different phage types and three RAPD types with ERIC-1 and ERIC-2 and five types with M13 primers. According to our results the standard PFGE protocol [32] gives the opportunity to differentiate epidemiologically independent but evolutionary related or unrelated isolates, but the practical value of PFGE method for epidemiological purposes must be confirmed by other or more restriction enzymes or using an other protocol. Summarizing our results we suggest the use of phage and RAPD typing and in doubtful cases the PFGE method.

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Developments in Health Sciences
ZS Mézám
N Schweitzer
A Jakab
M Klein Hubikné
I Vámosi
O Türei
, and
Á Klein
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